2020-06-23 Training C2:M1:S1

Empathy Circle Facilitator Training

Cohort 2: Module 1: Session 1 of 4


Sign Up: Empathy Circle Facilitator Training Sign Up This is a free Empathy Circle Facilitator Training. Learn to facilitate an Empathy Circle. Join this event if you would like to take part in the training. This is a 4 session training, 2 hours per session. Bear with us as we design and set up this training process and workflow. We are forming multiple cohorts of 4 to 12 participants. There is limited space in each cohort, and all participants must check with trainers to be accepted into the training. The basics of facilitating an Empathy Circle are fairly easy, however, it is a life long learning to deepen the skills and build a more empathic way of being and culture.

Empathy Circle Facilitator Training: Cohort 2: Module 1: Session 1 of 4: Circle 2

2020-06-23 Empathy Circle Facilitator Training #1

Notes by Greg

Values of A Culture of Empathy

  • Curiosity: Curiosity about others and what is important to them

  • Openness: Openness about, and to, oneself, and about different points of view.

  • Honesty: Honesty about saying what is important to you, even if it is different from other people’s ideas or feelings

  • Mutuality: In the circle, mutuality means following the structure provided to ensure everyone gets an equal chance to be heard to their satisfaction

  • Inclusion: Inclusion recognizes the richness of diversity and takes action to include that diversity.

  • Equality: This is no hierarchy in a circle, everyone participates as a person, not as a role (Boss/employee, parent/child, etc.

Understanding the principles helps with facilitating

A response to lack of openness is to create more feeling of safety.

Safety does not mean being protected from hearing things you don’t want to hear. Reflecting back does not mean you agree with what the person said.

If a listener goes off simply saying back what the speaker is saying, the facilitator can step in and say “I hear you asking a question; that’s not your role at this moment.”

The goal for a facilitator is for everyone to feel fully heard.

Asking people to say something they love to do is a way to expose their humanness.

It helps for the facilitator to be the first listener, to model what that is like.

Listening for (a) information; (b) feelings; (c) the speaker’s values. [This is not explicitly taught; that would put people in their heads. It’s best that people develop this from practice.]

[Not part of training… People who want social change criticize and judge, and it’s because they want change, but they get the opposite of what they want when they attack so. And they do it because of their pain, which he has empathy for.]

[One lady really listened to a cab driver who was dumping about his bad feelings. As she listened, the driver felt it and softened, to where he was then friendly by the end of the trip.]

Later training (sessions 3 & 4) go into what to do if someone doesn’t want to follow/do the process, and what to do if someone is really strongly disagreeable to others’ values, views.

Sometimes people find it mentally exhausting to do this listening & reflecting; how to deal with that?